Trying to fit a little art time into life can be challenging. For example, I work a full-time job, help my wife with her work, and try to take care of myself and our household. Then there are responsibilities for the community and family, and other interests to pursue. I’m sure everyone has similar challenges, so making time and space for art requires some ingenuity and discipline.
One way I am addressing this challenge is to draw during my lunch break. There are a couple of parks and a library within a 10 minute drive of my office, so I can zip over to one of those locations at lunch and get in about 40 minutes of colored pencil drawing before going back to work.
I’ve put together a little portable colored pencil studio to facilitate this. The studio is contained within a zip-up binder purchased during back-to-school time from a friendly international retail giant.
Within the drawing kit are all sorts of goodies. Here you will find, from left to right, a pencil case capable of holding 120 pencils, a sheet of frisket film (for erasing), a 10″x13″ masonite panel to use as a drawing board, a protractor, a binder clip, and a watch with countdown alarm to keep me on schedule.
Within the pencil case are more goodies. The case has two zip-up compartments that unfold to hold 60 pencils per compartment. On one side of the case I store my colored pencil selection. I am currently using Faber-Castell Polychromos.
I work from the other side of the pencil storage case. Here we find, from left to right, a Lyra Splender for blending pigment, an eraser pencil, a graphite pencil, a pencil extender, and the colored pencils I am currently using for a specific drawing (my “working palette”). Continuing to the right, there are a couple of sharpeners, a water brush, a pocketknife (with scissors), a paintbrush, some Pigma Micron pens, and a selection of water-soluble colored pencils.
Of course, having all those pencils requires a good set of color swatches so that you can choose the right pencil for the desired color.
It helps to have a subject to draw, especially when sitting in the library, so I bring along a stack of 4″x6″ reference photos.
That’s about it for the kit. Sometime soon I would like to let you look over my shoulder at the colored pencil drawing process.